Saturday, January 31, 2009

Q. Would you hire a long-distance baby sitter?

A. Depends on how old the baby is.

From those wonderful folks in Sweden who brought us SpyOn Voice... Now, a morphed and more palatable (ta-daaa) SpyOn Baby.

How could you resist a cute little program that calls itself, "A modern baby alarm that allows you to watch over your baby at home and over the internet." (for less than $10.00)

Besides, "If you are looking for specialists in VOIP (Voice over IP) then you have come to the right place. We are developing a series of applications based upon VOIP technology. If you can not find exactly what you are looking for maybe we can develop it for you."

And, oh, by the way, the company name is Spying Machines.

Why do we mention it?

So you know what your up against.

2009 State and Federal Privacy Laws Supplement

The 2009 Supplement to Privacy Journal's Compilation of State and Federal Privacy Laws (0-930072-17-0, 2002) has just been published. The price is $25, plus $4 for shipping. Need the original 2002 book as well? The price for the 2002 book and the current Supplement together is $35 plus $4 for shipping.

Lee Shoreham, Assistant to the Publisher
PO Box 28577
Providence RI 02908
Phone: 401/274-7861
Fax: 401/274-4747

Employer Spying Increases

On Wednesday, the German rail spying scandal went from run-of-the-mill to flabbergasting: 173,000 -- and not 1,000 -- employees were spied on.

Politicians and the public are outraged, and commentators predict that the Deutsche Bahn CEO will take the fall. (more)

Employee Spying Increases

High anxiety about job-cuts in the workplace is fueling inter-office rumors, gossiping and eavesdropping, according to a recent survey by the Society for Human Resource Management.

Of 494 human-resource professionals surveyed, nearly 1/4 reported that they had encountered significantly more cases of eavesdropping in the workplace over the past year...

More than 1/5 of survey respondents reported that workers at their companies had recently been confronted or disciplined by an authority figure for spreading rumors or eavesdropping
. (

Litigant Becomes Miki Mole

The Opposition Pays more ways than one.
Microsoft is suing a former employee for applying for his job under false pretenses and using his role at the company to gain access to confidential data related to patent litigation he is now waging
, reports the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

Miki Mullor was hired by Microsoft in November 2005 after stating in his job application that he was a former employee at Ancora Technologies, a local software development company that he said had gone out of business.

However, Microsoft claims Ancora was still a viable company and that Mullor was still its chief executive — and that while he was at Microsoft, he downloaded confidential documents to his company-issued laptop. (more)

Miki talks... "When I joined Microsoft, I notified them in writing of Ancora and my patent in both my resume and in my employment agreement. In its complaint against me, Microsoft withheld the portions of these key documents that show this." (more)

"The patent case is scheduled for trial in a Los Angeles federal court on Jan. 26, 2010."
This is getting interesting, and EXPENSIVE. Let's meet back here in a year and see what happens.

Spybusters Tip # 493
Look for espionage problems pro-actively. Catch them early.
Result... Low cost. Higher success rate.
Need help? Call us.

Japan's New Wiretap Law Take Root, Bears Fruit

Japan - The Communication Interception Law, which authorizes wiretapping as part of investigations, took effect in 2000. The Metropolitan Police Department carried out Japan's first wiretap authorized under the law in 2002.

Police across Japan conducted authorized wiretaps in a record 11 cases in 2008, up four from the previous year, that lead to the arrest of 34 people, Justice Minister Eisuke Mori told a Cabinet meeting Friday.

The number of arrests was the same as 2007... "Know-how on authorized wiretapping seems to be steadily taking hold," the Justice Ministry said. (more)

Friday, January 30, 2009

Shades... of Joe Engressia

A legally blind Massachusetts phone hacker admitted this week to federal computer intrusion and witness intimidation charges that could put him away for as long as 13 years.

Matthew Weigman, 18, pleaded guilty to two felonies before U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul D. Stickney in Dallas on Tuesday. Known in the telephone party-line scene as "Li'l Hacker," Weigman is widely considered one of the best phone hackers alive.

In his plea deal with prosecutors, Weigman, who was born blind, admitted to a long criminal resume (.pdf). Among other things, he confessed to conspiring with other telephone hooligans who made hundreds of false calls to police that sent armed SWAT teams bursting into the homes of their party-line enemies.

In a new revelation, Weigman also admitted eavesdropping on customer service calls to Sprint, by dialing into a phone line used by Sprint supervisors to monitor their employees. Weigman parked on the spy line to overhear customers giving out their credit card numbers, which he memorized and passed to accomplices. Weigman and his friends used the numbers to purchase computers and other electronics. (more) (Joe Engressia)

Heavy Duty Recording SpyCam, Goes Lighter

Lighter Camera
from the seller's web site...
Date time stamping with 8Gb large memory
Lighter Camera with built in Micro DVR for your home or office surveillance when you are not there. it records everything what you missed while you are away.

Built in Digital Audio Video recorder will give you all the evidence you need to prove in the court in case some one came to your home or office for bad purpose.

You don't have to worry about the battery as it can work up to 6 long hours in a single charge. Micro SD card can record up to 8 hours of Very Fine audio video on 8GB Micro SD Card. (more)
Why do we mention it?
So you know what you are up against.

Thumb Stick in USB = VD for Unies

VD (Viral Data)
Japan - Virus infection of university campus computers via USB thumb drives has become common, according to the results of Yomiuri Shimbun survey that found more than 500 such incidents were reported in 13 universities.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Happy Data Privacy Day... and good luck

January 28, 2009 - the United States, Canada, and 27 European countries celebrate Data Privacy Day for the second time.

Designed to raise awareness and generate discussion about data privacy practices and rights, Data Privacy Day activities in the United States have included privacy professionals, corporations, government officials, and representatives, academics, and students.

One of the primary goals of Data Privacy Day is to promote privacy awareness and education among teens across the United States. Data Privacy Day also serves the important purpose of furthering international collaboration and cooperation around privacy issues. (more)

This week's prelude to Data Privacy Day...
Heartland May Be the Biggest Data Breach Ever
Britain's biggest cyber theft case -

Top Five Teen Privacy Tips for the Internet

Privacy is the right to decide who has access to your personal information and how that information should be used.

Think carefully about the information you share online and understand how social networking sites work to use them responsibly and safely.

1. Know your potential audience.
Be aware that anyone, including site operators, advertisers, colleges, potential employers, friends and parents, as well as dangerous people or sexual predators may access, use, and forward the information you share online.

2. Use privacy settings to control who has access to information you put online, including your profile page, your photos, your “wall,” and your online journals. Do not share your phone numbers, home address, date of birth, school or team name, travel plans, social security number or other national ID numbers, family financial information, bank or credit card numbers. Don’t share your passwords with anyone.

3. Don’t accept “friends” you do not know in the real world.
Never agree to meet anyone in person you have only “met” online.

4. Think before you post.
If you would not want a college or a prospective employer to see it, or if you wouldn’t share it with your parents, don’t post it. Once you put something online, it is difficult if not impossible to take it back. Respect the privacy of others. Don’t identify others on your page in a way they
would not identify themselves or post photos they would not post. Protect yourself. Ask friends to take down content about you that you would not post yourself, and un-tag photos that you may find embarrassing in the future.

5. You are your own best protector online.
Online conduct has consequences. Make smart choices.
(print version courtesy of Intel)

SpyCam Story #514 - The Electrician Guy

David Mitchell Clark, an electrician from Rancho Cucamonga has pleaded guilty to burglary for installing spy cameras in the bathrooms of homes.

Prosecutor Jason Anderson says investigators found 18 DVDs in Clark's house with hours of surveillance of women and families in various states of undress. Sheriff's investigators eventually tied him to nine installed cameras.

Investigators say the 35-year-old Clark told them last year he had installed one hidden camera in a Rancho Cucamonga home "because the wife was hot." (more) (more)

Skype vs. Eavesdropping

Mike Chapple handles a Skype question...
Q: Can an attacker gain important and private information from my phone through a peer-to-peer network?

A: Peer-to-peer telephone services such as Skype offer a way to save significant money on telephone services. By leveraging peer-to-peer networks to route calls around the world, every call becomes a local one. Peer-to-peer services allow telephone calls to be routed through the privately owned equipment of one or more unknown individuals. This raises a number of confidentiality, integrity and availability concerns, and little information is available about what, if any, security controls these services have put in place to protect your telephone calls.

While this is an interesting technology, I would not recommend that it be used for any private communications. (more)

Additional considerations...
Skype says their communications is encrypted.
Some say Skype encryption can be bypassed.

64% of women under 35 spy on partners

More than quarter of women use the internet to secretly spy on their partners, a survey has revealed... The research, by Virgin Media, showed that an astonishing 88 per cent of the population use the internet every day and that women are more that twice as likely to spy on their partners than men are... The under 35s are most paranoid, with 64 per cent of all interviewed admitting they have snooped at a partner's online communication or internet history. (more)

X-Ray Vision - Coming to a Wall Near You

prism 200 is a handheld through-wall radar, which has been designed to be used by police, special forces or the emergency services. It provides quick and covert intelligence on the movement and location of people in a room or building - without the need for invasive sensors.

prism 200 has been designed for situations where a high degree of insight is essential for success.
This compact, portable and durable product uses advanced signal processing to highlight moving people and objects in cluttered environments, through doors or brick, block and concrete walls. (more & videos) (brochure)

"Hey, kids! Just like the police drones."

Nitrotek, a seller of radio controlled helicopters and cars, announced that they are now offering a large scale, outdoor spy copter with a built in video camera and receiver. They claim this is the first fully functional dual rotor radio controlled helicopter with a camera built in offered in the world. ≈$206.00 (more)

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Pocket Gadgets & Bugs Rejoice - Mini Fuel Cells

The world's smallest working fuel cell has been created by US chemical engineers, at just 3 millimetres across. Future versions of the tiny hydrogen-fuelled power pack could replace batteries in portable gadgets.

While batteries are used to do that today, fuel cells are able to store more energy in the same space. Even the most advanced batteries have an energy density an order of magnitude smaller than that of a hydrogen fuel tank.

Yet batteries are much easier to make at the small scale than the pumps and control electronics of a fuel cell. And small pumps can use more energy than they generate. (more)

SpyCam Story #513 - Another Dip in the Pool

A Connecticut man was arrested Sunday accused of videotaping guests at a Cape Cod resort.

Alan Gillette, 50, of Winsted, Conn., was also in possession of a stun gun, pepper spray and drugs when he was arrested...

Gillette was seen at the Cape Codder Resort and Spa videotaping guests at the pool and in the sauna... Witnesses said the man had a camera hidden under a towel. The hotel has a policy banning video cameras in the pool area.

Police were able to hear conversations taking place in the pool and sauna area on the video... There was also footage from inside the men's locker room and audio recording of muffled conversations while the showers were running, police said.

Gillette pleaded not guilty... to charges of possession of chemical mace without an FID card, selling or possessing an electric stun gun and unlawful wiretapping. He was ordered to stay away from the Cape Codder. (more)

Sour RazzBerry?

Obama’s spy-proof BlackBerry still a security risk, claims Microsoft...
"You would be sending your data outside the country," Fox News quoted Randy Siegel, a Microsoft enterprise mobile strategist... He stressed that even if RIM routed information through a U.S. data center, the devices aren't built to NSA's security specs. (more)

US Military Files on $15. Thrift Shop MP3 Player

A New Zealand man has found confidential US military files on an MP3 player he bought in an Oklahoma thrift shop.

Chris Ogle, 29, paid $15 for the player and when he plugged it into his computer he found 60 pages of military data. The files contained the names and personal details of US soldiers, including some who served in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as information about equipment deployed to bases and a mission briefing. (more)

Other Countries' Illegal Surveillance Problems

Lebanon - Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat accused Minister of Telecommunications Jebran Bassil of illegally allowing bugging of communications. Jumblat, in an article published by the PSP's weekly al-Anbaa on Tuesday, said Bassil is hosting a colonel from the General Security Directorate at the ministry where he runs a network of employees "specialized in bugging calls." (more)

How to Beat a Keystroke Logger

Need password privacy when using un-secure computers?
Afraid your significant other placed a keystroke logger?

Want to keep your net surfing URLs private?

While no solution provides 100% security, but bypassing the traditional keyboard will help...

My-T-Soft Virtual Onscreen Keyboards
I-Tech Virtual Laser Keyboard (bluetooth)
Click-N-Type Virtual Keyboard
MountFocus Virtual Keyboard
FREE Virtual Keyboard by MiloSoft

For the more technically advanced...

Virtual Keyboard Interface - Adds a virtual keyboard to text fields, password fields and text areas allowing keyboard-less input of text and special characters. Install the script and double-click on one of the form element types above to display the keyboard. This is a Greasemonkey script and will work wherever Greasemonkey works. (download page)

Airport Security / Airport Insecurity - Games

Airport Security offers a satirical critique of airport security practices circa early fall 2006, when security agencies in the US and abroad changed their policies to prohibit common items like toothpaste and hair gel.

Do knee-jerk reactio
ns that limit our freedom of expression and travel make us safer? In Airport Security you inspect each passenger and his luggage and remove the forbidden items before allowing the passenger to go through -- but the list of forbidden items changes on a moment-to-moment basis. Prohibited items may include pants, mouthwash, and hummus. (more) (play it now)

Airport Insecurity - a game about inconvenience and the trade-offs between security and rights in American airports. While the government wants you to believe that increased protection and reduced rights are necessary to protect you from terrorism, the effectiveness of airport security practices is uncertain.

Airport Insecurity allows you to explore these issues in context: the game's rules are based on government reports about airport security practices since 2002. To consider the game's implications fully, players are encouraged to play the game while waiting in line at airport security. (more)

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Ever see a co-worker snooping?

If so, how did they do it?
(click to enlarge)

"Attention, nanny's union. Attention nanny's..."

WA - Everett lawmaker, Mike Sells, has filed a bill in the state legislature to make it illegal to videotape teachers without their knowledge. The bill is in response to the Everett School District's use of hidden cameras when it was investigating a teacher in 2007...

The bill currently in the state legislature would require that all staff must be notified in writing in advance before video surveillance is used. Schools would also be required to post written notices outside any rooms that may have hidden cameras. Current law allows for hidden cameras as long as no audio is recorded. (

Rogue Security Hurts Reputations

A cautionary tale...
Whether he's known as a boardroom brawler or maybe the savior of SemGroup LP, John Catsimatidis doesn't mind his reputation as a man of his convictions or contradictions...

His takeover of United Refining paid back creditors 100 cents on the dollar, but hit a judicial bump when the company's security apparatus admitted to illegally wiretapping some staffers at the Warren headquarters.

Catsimatidis was never accused of any personal wrongdoing in the wiretapping case. He said that the surveillance began before he owned the company and before it was actually illegal under Pennsylvania law.

"The law changed in 1986, but they kept doing it," he recalled. "I didn't know about it until afterwards."

The security firm kept up the wiretaps after Catsimatidis took control of United Refining, according to reports. He replied that it was stopped and the offending employee was fired once he discovered the practice. (more)

Due Diligence...
CEOs... Quarterly inspections to discover electronic eavesdropping can uncover rogue Security operations like this one. We can help. Please call us.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

SpyCam Story #512 - The Boss Spy

Canada - There is an extremely fine line between what might be considered voyeurism and employee surveillance as Cornerstone Properties learned. It also learned that a high price can be exacted if an employer installs a secret camera to monitor its employees.

Colleen Colwell, commercial manager, had been working for the company for more than seven years, when she learned a secret camera had been installed in the ceiling of her office almost a year earlier by her boss, Trent Krauel, Cornerstone's vice-president in finance.

Colwell resigned and sued both Cornerstone and Krauel for constructive dismissal. Justice David Little found for Colwell. (more)


Germany's national rail company, Deutsche Bahn, may have spent years spying on its employees according to a report published by a leading newsmagazine. More than 1,000 workers, many of them in management, might have been victims of the clandestine surveillance. (more)

It is never "Just an 'information' loss."

Data theft.

Sure, the lost information is very valuable, but the collateral damage can be the real killer.
Investigation costs.
Stockholder suits.
Attorney's fees.
Evaporated customer "good will."
Lost competitive standing.
Public embarrassment.
...and even this unexpected PR cost...

Discounter TJX Cos. today is holding its long-anticipated "Customer Appreciation" sale, related to the massive consumer data breach that compromised as many as 100 million accounts.

The one-day promotion, advertised yesterday for the first time, gives customers 15 percent off purchases, excluding gift cards and layaways. The sale is being held at more than 2,100 TJ Maxx, Marshalls, HomeGoods, and A.J. Wright stores nationwide.

The customer appreciation sale was initially negotiated as part of a court settlement connected to the breach, which was first disclosed by TJX in January 2007. Ultimately, the sale was not included in the court agreement, but TJX - which rarely holds storewide sales - said it decided to hold the promotion anyway. (more)

Moral: Proactive security is cheaper, much much cheaper. Call us.

You've hired a great security consultant when...

...they think like this!

I trust all is well with you.
This was sent to me by one of my kids.

SoundBulb - lighting and wireless speakers

My thought was gee….could it not be converted into a microphone?

Pat Murphy
, President
LPT Security Consulting
Houston, Texas

Thank you, Pat!
(Although this bulb is not available yet,
the SpyCam light bulb is here.

How a Leak Created Information Security Policy

Canada - First, they disconnect the phone lines. Then they lock the doors. And nobody gets out for 27 hours.

Ottawa goes to extreme lengths to shield the printing of the federal budget from prying eyes – a process that begins again this weekend in preparation for the huge stimulus package the Harper government will unveil on Tuesday.

“It's like Fort Knox,” one former Finance Department official said of the secrecy and security deployed to ensure that nothing like the 1989 leak of a budget pamphlet to Global TV reporter Doug Small ever happens again.

Twenty years after the embarrassing incident, the department refuses to discuss any aspect of printing the budget. (more)

Eight Charged With Illegal Wiretapping

Peru's attorney general presented criminal charges Friday against eight people, including a recently demoted rear admiral, accused of making illegal wiretap recordings...

Attorney General Gladys Echaiz said six suspects run a private security company, Business Track SAC, that allegedly tapped the phone lines of as many as 30 people. Two others worked for a subcontractor. (


70% Spy On Their Partner Online

UK - More than 70 percent of people spy on their partners online activity, many at least once a month, it has been found.

The worried spouses are not only spying on internet histories to see if adult websites have been viewed, but also monitoring each others social networking. 68 percent of Brits also admitted they would check their partner's private emails if they knew the password.

Steffen Ruehl, of yasni which commissioned the study said: "There really is nowhere to hide on the web anymore; especially now that people are so active online, with social networking sites and forums." (more)

Quote of the day - Grapes of Wrath

"I hate cameras. They are so much more sure than I am about everything."
--John Steinbeck

Friday, January 23, 2009

A business map which shows the trolls and traps!

There is a new threat assessment kid on the block, run by old pros with a great reputation.

The iThreat® Global Intelligence Monitor (GIM) is a near-real-time Web application that displays potential threat data on a map, right alongside your organization’s assets.

Potential threats are proximity-matched according to your organization’s facility locations. You can also uncover threats that refer to products, employee destinations and your executives’ names.

Test-Drive GIM for Free! (Due to the sensitive nature of Red Flag threat data, demos are restricted to qualified security professionals only.)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

You Need A Smart Information / Data Attorney

I am at Princeton University yesterday, giving a counterespionage presentation to InfraGuard.
I left with more than I brought:
Recommended Data Security Best Practices -- a lucid and 'doable' White Paper.
- And, a valuable business card...

One of my fellow presenters turned out to be "data legalities" guru, Scott S. Christie, a Partner at McCarter & English (160 years old, 400 lawyers, excellent reputation). He concentrates his practice in the areas of Information Technology, Intellectual Property, White-Collar Criminal Defense and Complex Commercial Litigation.

Scott provides counseling to companies on protecting the confidentiality, integrity and availability of their proprietary business information and computer networks and on complying with information security and electronic privacy laws and regulations.

He really knows his stuff!

Additionally, he assists companies in developing computer network incident response plans, provides guidance after network security breaches, conducts internal investigations and litigates against those responsible for network intrusions.

Proactively, Mr. Christie instructs companies on protecting information and provides guidance concerning their obligations when responding to breaches of security.

You want Scott on your side... before it all hits the fan.
He knows where the switch is. Call him. Say hello.

Would you like a copy of Scott's Best Practices, too?
Click here!

An Industry Leader Speaks Out on Espionage

You have seen the "Employees Steal Company Secrets" stories here, and in WhiteRock's newsletter, WhiteSparks. Here is what a top insider thinks... (via WhiteSparks)

In response to WhiteSparks article ‘Enemy Within: 60% of Employees Happy to Steal Company Secrets’ (Issue 1, 7 January 2009), we recently received an email from a senior figure in the industry. He provides a compelling reason for why employees are willing to steal company secrets:

"You know, there would be less of this going on if companies did not actively recruit staff with the intention of taking client lists with them..... It's like drugs - if there is no market, there is no point in being the supplier...."

Stories in the media about the theft of trade secrets tend to focus on individual employees who are caught red-handed, but here we are invited to consider the wider issue – that of corporate demand for proprietary information.

If you enjoy Kevin's Security Scrapbook you will also want to receive WhiteSparks. Contact WhiteRock's Managing Director, Rali Maripuu, for your free subscription.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Top actress’ cell phone cloned to eavesdrop

Korea’s top actress Jun Ji-hyun’s cell phone has been illegally cloned to allow eavesdropping by her management company whose contract with her expires next month, police say. The company denied the allegation.

Police had earlier questioned three people from a private detective agency, including a 42-year-old man identified only by the surname Kim, and two Sidus HQ officials about the alleged phone duplication.

The private agency was hired by Jun’s company exclusively for the job, police say. (more)

In 2000, an intimate videotape of a singer taped by her manager was leaked. There was a feeling that the formation of huge entertainment agencies in recent years has meant less intrusion into stars' privacy, but some managers say discreet "monitoring" of the private life of stars still goes on and is considered necessary supervision. (

UPDATE ...a representative from the police department revealed that the two Sidus HQ employees under investigation have admitted to the illegal eavesdropping of Jeon Ji Hyun’s mobile. (more)

UPDATE II ...Prosecutors cleared the chief of Sidus HQ, a major entertainment agency, of replicating a cell phone of top actress Jeon Ji-hyun, 27, to track her phone calls and text messages... The outside expert, who was hired to help copy and rig Jeon's handset, was given a one-year jail sentence last month. (more)

World's Biggest Data Breach

Credit card payment processor Heartland Payment Systems may be the victim of the largest breach to date.

The Princeton, N.J.-based firm said Tuesday that it discovered malicious software in its systems that compromised the security of the data traversing its network.

It's unclear what data may have been tampered with or stolen, but Heartland said no merchant data, cardholder Social Security numbers, unencrypted PIN numbers, addresses or telephone numbers "were involved in the breach."

The company also advised consumers to examine their monthly statements closely.

Heartland told The Washington Post that it processes 100 million credit and debit card transactions per month. This volume led analysts to surmise that the company's breach could be the world's biggest to date. (more)

SpyCam Story #511 - $29.90 Mini SpyCam

...from the seller's web site.
"The Eyecam all-in-one color video (and audio) camera is one of the world's smallest color video cameras with built in transmitter available. a low low price, you can have the coolest spy gadget in the world! Amazing!" (more)
Why do we mention it.
So you will know what you are up against.

VoIP Hackers Strike (as predicted)

Australia - A hacker recently obtained unauthorised access to the IP telephony (VoIP) system of a Perth business, making 11,000 calls costing over $120,000, according to the Western Australian police.

The calls were made over a period of 46 hours, the police said, and the business only became aware of the imposition when it received an invoice from its service provider. (more)

Pet Eye View Digital Camera

What have Kitty and Fido been up to all day, anyway?
Find out with this amazing device!
The ultra-compact and extremely durable digital camera clips onto your pet's collar, just like an ID tag. Its water-resistant ABS housing will keep it secure while your best friend roams the world, giving you the chance of a lifetime to actually see all the stories your pet has been dying to tell you for years! The internal memory stores lots of photos, and the timer can be set to automatically take a shot every 1, 5, or 15 minutes. (more)
Wireless Color Real-Time Video with Sound.
No, wait...
that's the next story.

"And now for something completely different."

Like cheese?
Like it with a nice drink?
Find your skoal-mate at
Very cool site. ~Kevin

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Job Fears Make Offices All Ears

via The Wall Street Journal...
Human-Resources Officials Say Rise in Employee Eavesdropping Fans Rumors

While workplace eavesdropping has been going on for ages, fears about layoffs and corporate restructuring have left employees more attentive to what's going on around them. And as employees resort to eavesdropping, human-resources professionals say they are encountering cases of rumor-spreading in the workplace more frequently.

After mass layoff announcements this fall, Society for Human Resource Management found that 23% of human-resource professionals surveyed have encountered significantly more cases of eavesdropping in the workplace over the past 12 months. Meanwhile, 54% reported a sharp increase in gossip and rumors about downsizing and layoffs in their workplaces.

Companies are now taking measures to curtail the eavesdropping problem. (more)

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Spirit of TELEX Returns

TELEX was a slow and trusted messaging service; since replaced by fast and iffy e-mail. One company wants you to have the best of both - fast and trusted. Their pitch is a firm punch in the nose...

"Your eMails are being intercepted by criminals, governments and even your competitors! What can you do about it?"

iTelex is the world's leading fully encrypted, email service. Our state-of-the-art technology keeps our users' online communications private. Free and easy to use, iTelex works similarly to other Web-based email providers, except iTelex offers the security of 2,048-bit encryption between iTelex users. With iTelex, users can access their address from any computer that has an internet connection and a web browser. (more)

Benefits of the old Telex and new i-Telex:
- Guaranteed Delivery
- Reliability
- Privacy/Security
- Instant Messaging
- Live Messaging
- Legally Binding Messaging
- Encrypted Attachments

Sunday, January 18, 2009

"Oh, We're Not Gonna Take It" I

Demonstration against wiretapping law in Helsinki on Feb 5, 2009
Meeting near the Central Railway Station at 14:30, demonstration to begin outside the Parliament at 15:00.

“Lex Nokia” is a loophole plagued law proposal which, if passed, would allow network owners to spy on header information (from/to fields) in electronic communications in order to stop very loosely defined “misuse”. Eavesdropping on “parts” of unencrypted electronic communication protocols is as much of a bad joke as pretending to be reading only the address part of a non-enveloped postcard. (more) (sing-a-long)

"Oh, We're Not Gonna Take It" II

ND - Drunken bar brawls in Oliver County’s biggest city have authorities calling on taverns to install surveillance systems and turn over their recordings after a fight. That’s unsettling to bar owners who say their customers have a right to talk freely, even if they slur their words, without being recorded.

I don’t have a problem with the video camera, but I won’t put audio in here. That’s baloney,” said Perry Wolf, owner of the Lonewolf Saloon in Center, N.D., a town of fewer than 700 in the heart of coal country. (more) (sing-a-long)

"Oh, We're Not Gonna Take It" III

Eavesdropping craft critical for monitoring terrorists...

The NRO payload on the Delta 4-Heavy is a 5-to-6 ton eavesdropping spacecraft with a high tech deployable antenna as wide as 350 feet. The spacecraft is to enhance the capability for the U.S. to listen in on communications in hostile governments like Iran and terrorist organizations like Al Qaeda. (more) (sing-a-long)

SpyCam Story #510 - Action Camo Cam

Completely Covert Camouflage Micro DVR Camera For Stakeouts
At Only 3 Inches, Mount It Anywhere For Covert Surveillance
- Completely Weatherproof w/ Built-In DVR

- 30 FPS Full Screen Video & Audio
- SD Card / Built-In LCD Screen
- 2x Zoom / Battery Powered
- Review Video On Any Computer - PC Or MAC
- Capture Up To 100 Minutes Of Recorded Video

Designed For Portability And Outdoor Use - Even Underwater
The Little Titan Camouflage DVR Camera is the only covert camera designed specifically for portability, outdoor use, and more. Perfect for sting operations, suspect tracking, and all your day-to-day operations on-the-move, this camera records crystal clear 30 fps full screen video as well as audio.

attery life of 1 to 4 hours and the ability to store an incredible 100 minutes of video. Video stores directly to a SD card and can be reviewed on any PC, monitor, or directly on the device itself using the built-in LCD screen. $199.95 (more) (video)
Why do we mention it?
So you know what you're up against.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

I always feel like somebody's watchin' me...

UK - University students in Cheltenham say they are being spied on and filmed by residents in St Paul's. The students say people hid in bushes to watch them in an attempt to gather evidence of anti-social behaviour. (more) (sing-a-long)

Handwriting That Remembers What It Hears

The boss talks. You take some notes. Three days later... "That's not what I said!"

You are an investigator; interviewing a suspect. At the deposition... "That's not what I meant! I was being sarcastic when I said, 'Oh, sure I did it.'"

Hummm.... Let's ask Mr. Pen. Mr. Pen was there. He wrote the notes. He heard you. Hey, Mr. Pen. What did you hear?

As Pen is my witness. Here hear... [insert irrefutable audio proof here]

Mr. Pen, of course, is just a nom de plume.
His real name is the Pulse, aka “smartpen”, by Livescribe. (
Note to Executives:
Keep in mind, Mr. Pen could be "in anyone's pocket." Just recording.
Note to Teachers:
Mr. Pen is smart. Write a math problem with him... and the answer appears on his display! Keep Mr. Pen away from math exam papers.
Look for future smart pens to be even smarter. "Open Chanel 'D'."

Wiretap Recordings Found

Turkey - Police found wiretapping records of former Chief of General Staff Hilmi Özkök’s phone conversations at retired Brig. Levent Ersöz’s home Friday, as part of the Ergenekon investigation. Ersöz was caught at a hospital in Ankara on Thursday and detained in connection with the ongoing case against the gang. In July, he had fled to Moscow. (more)

Want a job in TSCM?

This one was just posted...

This is a long term contract position for Savannah River Site located in Aiken, SC.
Must be a U. S. Citizen.

Performs all duties and responsibilities described for a Certified Technical Surveillance Countermeasures (TSCM) Technician contained in DOE M 470.4-4, "Information Security", Section E, and "Technical Surveillance Countermeasures Program"; and as an alternate TEMPEST and Protected Transmissions System (PTS) Coordinator as detailed in DOE M 205.1-3, "Telecommunications Security".

Serves as the Savannah River Site (SRS) primary POC and subject matter expert on Technical Surveillance Countermeasures (TSCM) issues. Provides TSCM support to all SRS activities, as directed by DOE-SR TSCM Program Manager. This includes ensuring that specified areas are free from audio or optical technical surveillance devices and that equipment being introduced into those areas has not been manipulated to surreptitiously provide information to unauthorized persons or foreign governments... (more)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

SpyCam Story #509 - "Yo, ho ho..."

UK - A Royal Navy petty officer was jailed for two years today for spying... Tom Paul Opie, 36, cut holes in the ceiling and wall of a changing room to secretly film the women on his mobile phone... Plymouth Crown Court heard that his 18-year Navy career has now ended in disgrace and his wife has left him in disgust. (more)

Your Third Eye Has an Indelible Memory

The VIEVU PVR-PRO 2 is an enhanced WEARABLE video recording device for use by consumers and professionals wishing to capture their daily events or protect themselves from liability.

The design enables the camera to be attached to the user so that their perspective is captured during their routine daily events.

Video files are downloaded to a PC via simple drag-and-drop. Once transferred, the files can be edited or uploaded to your favorite video sharing site. The camera operates via an on/off switch which also serves as a lens cover.

VIEVU PVR-PRO can record and store approximately 4 hours of video and audio in SVGA quality format. (

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Industrial Espionage - Sony Ericsson Ripped Off

A number of stolen prototypes of Sony Ericsson mobile phones were found at the home of a company employee, Swedish police said on Wednesday.

Sony Ericsson is keeping quiet about the situation. A spokesman at the company confirmed that a number of prototypes were involved, but wouldn't elaborate on any of the details, Computer Sweden reported...

What the person was planning to do with the phones -- which are worth about 750,000 Swedish kronor (US$90,000), according to the police -- and what kind of devices were stolen remains unclear.

Prototypes can be very valuable to the competition, because they show where a company is heading in the long term, according to Chris Hazelton, research director for mobile and wireless at The 451 Group. (more)
Think of all the similar competing cell phones which debut at the same time. Just coincidence? Example: iPhone vs. LG KE850 (photos courtesy

Secret Maps in "Monolpoly" Pieces! True or False

Did the British Secret Service, MI-5, send specially packaged versions of the popular board game "Monopoly" to prisoners of war in Germany during World War II?

Did these games have escape maps hidden inside the playing pieces?

Check your answers

Nortel Goes Chapt. 11 - Spying Concerns to Blame

As Nortel files for bankruptcy... a less-discussed factor may have scuttled the struggling networking company's last hope for a savior: concerns over Chinese cyberspying...

The most interested potential acquirer of the Ethernet division may have been Chinese company Huawei... The Shenzhen-based networking giant has a murky history of cooperation with its homeland's authoritarian regime, and concerns over Huawei's government ties, according to some industry-watchers and security analysts, may have spooked Nortel's customers that carried sensitive U.S. government data and scuttled the Chinese company's offer...

The Chinese company has long been searching for an opportunity to expand to North America...

Given Huawei's history, a tie-up with the company would raise the specter of a hidden back door in a router or switch, siphoning that data to foreign spies. (more)

Our Favorite Spies - Patrick McGoohan

Los Angeles - Patrick McGoohan, an Emmy-winning actor who created and starred in the cult classic television shows "Secret Agent" ("Danger Man") and "The Prisoner" has died. He was 80.

McGoohan died Tuesday in Los Angeles after a short illness, his son-in-law, film producer Cleve Landsberg, said Wednesday.

McGoohan won two Emmys for his work on the Peter Falk detective drama "Columbo," and more recently appeared as King Edward Longshanks in the 1995 Mel Gibson film "Braveheart."
But he was best known as the title character Number Six in "The Prisoner," a surreal 1960s British series in which a former spy is held captive in a small village and constantly tries to escape. (more) (The Prisoner tribute) (Amazon - Secret Agent, The Prisoner)

Where are the real TSCM spy jobs?

These might be harsh times in the jobs market, but it seems there is still plenty of work for people who can provide their own dark suits and sunglasses. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States's famed law enforcement agency, is seeking to fill thousands of posts as it embarks on the biggest recruitment drive in its 101-year history.

The vacancies include 850 special agents... There are a further 2,100 "professional staff positions" available behind the scenes: jobs include intelligence analysts, fingerprint experts, language specialists
and electronics technicians, presumably for help with wire-tapping and other hi-tech eavesdropping. (more)